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“Here simply to feel that we breathe—
That we live—
Is worth the best pleasures life

Elsewhere can give.”

On the third morning Bertha received letters from Madame Roden and her young daughters; Herman, leaving her to read them, strolled into the city and entered the Gran Bretagna ; here a gratification which he had often sought in vain, and long desired, presented itself—a file of English newspapers. He hastily scanned one and then another, till his eye was caught by his own name— and where ? among the list of bankrupts At the moment the pulsation of his heart seemed arrested—the next a dimness obscured his sight. He rose with an effort from his chair and moved up and down a pace or two to recover himself, and then again sat down before the fatal paper and rivetted his eyes upon the hideous announcement. How he regained his home he could have rendered little account; he had never properly recovered the stunning effect of the first shock. When he entered the apartment where he had left Bertha, he found it vacant; he staggered to a couch in a recess and threw himself upon it: as he lay, through the long vista of a suite of rooms, he beheld her ; she was arranging flowers and singing over her sweet employ. Presently she returned into the room and carelessly descrying him, she snatched a letter from the table, and seating herself on a low ottoman beside him, began to read it. It was a pressing invitation for them to proceed immediately to Roden Castle, to assist at the celebration of an important anniversary. “You must go,” said Herman, speaking with difficulty and in tones that made Bertha start, and turn to him ; another instant and she snatched aside the curtain that had partially veiled him as he lay, exclaiming, “Herman, you are ill!” “No-yes—no matter—you must go to Madame Roden—write directly—you must go—where else—Oh, God! Oh, God ''' “Herman—my beloved—my life—what is this?" She summoned servants; medical men were soon around them, but to no avail; sudden fever supervened, and ere nightfall Herman was raving in the wildest delirium. Now it was that Bertha knew the depth, the strength of the attachment twined with her very heart-strings; day and night she was beside that bed of fever performing miracles of strength. What strength is there like the strength of love? Animated by that, how will the fragile woman endure and do a giant's work. During the long hours of the night Bertha listened to Herman's ravings, but could comprehend nothing ; she heard him call on names, of which she knew nothing. The sympathizing women round her, after a time, entreated her to seek repose. “None—none !” she exclaimed, “but death by his side. I can die with him, but not live a moment away from him.” She suffered them to bathe her brow, to bind her hair at the bed side; but there she kept her place; her sleepless eye never left his face, no other hand ministered his medicines. To watch, to pray, when not called upon to tend him, was all the rest she took or seemed to require. At last the crisis came. He slept— slept profoundly. All would depend upon the issue of that sleep. She knelt and watched, fearing the very breath that left her parted lips. An hour stole away—another and another. Still he slept ; the conflict he had endured through many days required such repair. The sleep was calm; a moisture came upon the skin; the breathing was free and soft. She felt the angels of mercy were about her, and the untiring creature grew stronger with every protracted hour of increasing hope. At length the sick man woke—softly as if a light veil had been lifted—and the first object on which his eyes rested was the face of his kneeling wife. “Bertha' is it you, my love?” There was sanity and affection in the tone. Oh, the gush of holy gratitude that swept her heart; but, restraining every impulse, she crept softly to his pillow, and bending over him, wept unseen the first tears she had shed amid all her anguish. “Have I slept long ** he asked. “Let me get up. Not get up 3 To be sure I can—if you will only let me.” Gradually he learned his weakness—gradually recollections gathered, and the cause of his prostration came upon him, but more calmly Bertha urged him to cultivate repose—not to speak. “Nay, let me speak—not speaking did all the mischief—I feared to tell you, Bertha, the utter ruin that has overtaken us.” “Talk not of ruin,” she said, “there is no ruin while you live and love me. Speak—tell me all. Fear not for me—for you— with you I can bear anything.” Now Bertha first learned the source of his sudden indisposition; she saw that to throw forth the secret was necessary to his peace, and yet she trembled at the effort he was making, “No more,” at length she said, “no more. I see it all. Now, love, let me speak; hear me, dear Herman, hear me.” He needed not the injunction, his eyes were rivetted upon her face, marking every trait and turn of thought with intense emotion. Weak as he was, his intellect was again in full activity; the observation and study of character had been once his greatest pleasure, it was now his greatest interest. Neither had need to fear the scrutiny; her devotion was perfect; her energy equal to the event. With the calmest, gentlest tenderness, she soothed; she re-assured his spirit; told him that poverty had no terrors for her; and urged him to remember the moral wealth with which they were both inherent, and on which happiness was principally dependent. “But one thing I would urge. You say that you must proceed immediately to England, and alone. Why so 2 Why may I not go with you?” “Your situation,” he replied. “The better speed that I shall make alone; the engrossing nature of the objects which demand me.” “I submit,” she said, pressing his hand between both hers. “Bid me stay, and I will stay. Call me, and I will come to you. I have no haven but your arms; no health of heart, no peace of mind, but in your life—your love. Now rest; to-morrow we will talk of new plans, and future hopes.” In a few days Herman declared himself equal to travelling, urging the imperative necessity of his presence in England, which Bertha had written to announce. “All,” she said, “is arranged. I have been very busy within these few days in preparing for the change which awaits us both. I wrote to Madame Roden; reminded her that she had said she would give much for such an instructress for her daughters as I should prove, and I asked for the office for a time. I am accepted. This will secureme provision and protection during our separation.” Her voice faltered at the word. “We shall go together as far as Vienna.” Her energy; the confidence in the future which she inspired; her indifference to personal inconvenience; to the appliances that minister to mere appearance and parade; had a value beyond estimate at such a juncture. She took the initiative, and Herman with a secret solace in every new point of character she developed, yielded to her guidance. At Vienna he saw her enter the diligence to proceed to Presburg, and then, concentrating all his thoughts upon his commercial difficulties, went forward to expedite his progress to England. Among the conjectures which his mind had received and rejected, again and again, was want of faith on the part of Johnson, in whose hands had been vested the power of drawing on his banker to a large amount; but as he recalled the experience of the past years, which had teemed with evidence of the old man's rectitude and attachment, he cast from him the suspicion, and felt convinced that if anything had happened to annul his honest purpose, it had been death, disease, anything but delinquency. Thus in a vain, but natural course of tormenting thought, he proceeded, intending to reach England by the way of Ostend, when he verified the old adage, that “the more haste the worse speed.” He was stopped for the examination of his passport, and an impediment presented itself in his ignorance of the language in which he was addressed. He saw clearly that he was an object of suspicion. The officials spoke to him in German and French, but he understood neither. During his previous journey, his wife's knowledge of the French language, and the Roden's acquaintance with English, had shut from his view his deficiency and its probable consequences. For the time being the matter ended by his being conducted to prison. Few events of his life had annoyed him more than this. With a frame still suffering under debility and indisposition; with a mind a prey to anxiety, and panting with the most intense desire for dispatch, the weary hours of that night were the heaviest he ever passed. In the morning he was conducted into the presence of the superior officer. The original difficulty remained. Herman paused in perplexity, and then attempted to make himself understood by speaking Latin. The officer smiled and did likewise; but though the difficulty was thus diminished, the difference of their respective pronunciation was an insurmountable bar to the perfect communication necessary, till the official thought of pen and ink, and put his interrogatories into writing ; they were immediately answered, and Herman was set at liberty. The cause of his detention had been the circumstance of his wearing a wig, which he did in consequence of having had his head shaved during his recent illness, and in his passport he was described as wearing his own hair. His future progress was attended by no impediment worthy of note. Arrived in London, he sought out Johnson. It were difficult to have decided on which of the two, since the evening they had last met, the greatest change had been wrought. Anxiety had done haggard work on both. All was soon explained. The wreck of Mr. Miller's affairs had been contingent on the ruin of Fauntleroy, who had been his banker, and the depository of his whole fortune. Johnson, when the catastrophe occurred, knew not where to find his employer, and powerless to meet the demands upon his house, an act of bankruptcy and subsequent outlawry was the consequence. Herman now knew the worst ; he looked ruin in the face; but with less firmness than he would once have done; he was not now alone, to breast the storms, and bear the buffets of poverty. The arrangement of his commercial affairs, and, though he might never reinstate his fortune, to re-establish his character, was his great, his all-engrossing object. Day and night, aided by the indefatigable Johnson, he pursued his purpose; his estate paid seventeen shillings in the pound, and, in the secret counsel of his heart, he resolved, that, if life were allowed him, a day should come that should see the rest liquidated. Thus far the principle of intégrity was appeased ; but he owed a large debt to prudence, which a long life of future discretion could scarcely retrieve. The folly, the madness of a commercial man going forth, as he did, with

“Youth at the prow, and pleasure at the helm,”

could neither be forgotten nor forgiven by the jurors to whose peculiar scanning his case lay open ; he could not, now that he calmly considered it, forgive it to himself. However, restored to the moral position his integrity commanded, his mind gradually righted, he looked upon the necessity of beginning life anew with increasing firmness, and felt, in the person of his wife, that he had a lien on happiness. Yet at times, with the apprehensive reaction consequent on his late rashness, and recent experiences of the conduct of some former florid friends, he would think of Berthawould ask himself, if greatly brave and generous as she had been at the bursting of the storm, would she bear equally well the sullen weather into which it had subsided—the drear waste of struggling fortune upon which it had thrown them 2 In the midst of these doubts and fears, which resulted from physical even more than moral causes, came her assuring and supporting letters; and Johnson, the honest, high-hearted, grateful old man, he rallied to the rescue valiantly. Resisting every proposal and attempt for placing him in other employment, he exclaimed,— o

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